Sick of Running? These Exercises Can Spice Up Your Running Program
We do not stop exercising because we grow old - we grow old because we stop exercising.
Running is an amazing way to de-stress, keep fit and stay healthy, and provide a sense of challenge both mentally and physically. But what if running—the long distance on same routes—seems a tad bit bland? You feel like runs get a little more tiring, not because of detraining but due to overtraining?
Overtraining is not just physical strain and overwhelming overload. It also incorporates the mental part. Boredom is a good sign that you might be encountering overtraining from all these routine runs that once seemed like something you looked forward to every other evening but not anymore.
In this article, we will talk about 3 exercises that you can try when you get bored with running.
Muay Thai & Boxing
Whether you are a man or woman, picking up some skills on self-defense will boost your confidence, increase your ability to protect yourself, and get a kick out of just one hour of workout.
Martial arts are catching the trends recently at a pretty rapid rate. Education of fitness and exercise to women in Singapore has been growing steadily. From simply running on the treadmill in public gyms to lifting weights thrice their body weight. And now, we have women participating and owning the MMA scene.
Benefits of Muay Thai & Boxing
1. Dynamic & Full-Body Targeting
As opposed to running, Muay Thai and boxing consists of very dynamic movements, challenging every part of your body to push itself out of comfort zones. This full-body workout option is able to get your heart rate up very quickly and provide that exciting twist of learning new skills and exploration of what your body can do.
By the 24th to 72nd-hour post-workout, you will feel all major muscle groups sore -- in the best way possible.
2. Unleashes the warrior within yourself
Warriors are more than just good fighters or super fit individuals. They are strong in all aspects, from the physical being to emotional, mental, and spiritual being. Going to a professional Muay Thai and boxing gym, and learning from an expert will enable you to unlock more potential than you thought you have.
Learning self-discipline and being equipped with the culture of Muay Thai and boxing can enhance the way you handle stress from your daily life.
Where To Start
One of the best Muay Thai and boxing gyms in Singapore is The Jungle Asia located at 35B Boat Quay (River Facing, Top Floor), Raffles Place MRT.
Apart from Muay Thai and Boxing, these guys also have HIIT, MMA & BJJ, and personal training classes. The Jungle Asia also lies right in the heart of central Singapore and surrounded by many cafes serving healthy and nutritious post-workout meals.
Yoga & Meditation
If you haven’t tried at least one class of yoga but you’ve been wanting to, I’m challenging you to book one trial session with a yoga studio now! Yoga has escalated its fame in the fitness industry for very good reasons.
The benefits that people reap from consistent yoga practice goes beyond a tight and toned body. Yoga improves one’s flexibility, strength, muscular endurance, and one of its most crucial components—the mind and soul.
Benefits of Yoga & Meditation
1. Improves your flexibility and strength
The pictures on Instagram that you’ve been liking proves how amazing your body can become. Yoga allows you to learn how to properly utilise your muscles in the newest way possible, especially if you’ve been running your whole life.
2. Perfects your posture and reduces back pain
How healthy is your posture right now? If you are guilty of constant slouching, long sitting hours, and carrying a truckload of stuff in your bag which weighs your shoulders down, you’d most probably experience back pain as well.
Yoga can improve your posture and alleviate back pain by increasing your upper body strength and flexibility with body weight poses and movements. This exercise helps you to be more mindful and aware of your body, and to help you regain back the straight back that you started with.
Where To Start
Yoga studios are found everywhere around Singapore now. The one that I would recommend is Yoga+ as they have several studios in different places. You can find them at Arab Street, Pagoda, and Tanjong Pagar.
They have many different classes to choose from. So whether you’re a newbie or yoga master, you can head to their studio and give this a try.
Many of you might strike this off the list but I have personally tried all these three exercises on top on running -- they are very revitalising, challenging, and shakes the mundane out of your system immediately.
Going into a gymnastics gym, you would most probably be one or the other: I can’t do it or I want to do a backflip now. I was the latter and later learned that I had to learn more basics before I could look like one of the kids flipping from pole to pole.
Gymnastics, however, is not just meant for kids. I did an adult gymnastics class and it was very educating, sweat-busting, and gets you feeling alive instantly.
Benefits of Gymnastics
1. Get better at coordination & body awareness
They say self-awareness is key; the self is more than just your mind but the body as well thus, body awareness is an important aspect to grow in.
Some of us are more coordinated with our hands and legs, hands and eyes, etc. than others. But no matter which category you associate yourself with, gymnastics can help to improve this skill of yours.
Being more coordinated can really help you feel much more confident when you are trying new things when it comes to exercising. With most of our lifetime spent on sitting down, our coordination skills might have been slightly dampened.
With gymnastics training, you can get more aware of your body and feel in tune with your body and space.
2. Overcome fear of heights
Getting into gymnastics empowers you to overcome many common fears such as heights. It all looks easy when another person is jumping on the trampoline. Once you actually get on it and see how high you are, the fear of heights might creep in a little. However, the fact that you are going head-on with this is powerful in overcoming the fear that exists only in your mind.
Applying this back to your running journey, overcoming the fear of a marathon or another route that seem too hard in your head, becomes a copy-paste strategy. Being brave and going head-on with fear is the only way to defeat it and see growth.
Where To Start
Adult gymnastics is not the most common class in the market but there are a few of them. BazGym is the one I went to for my first-ever gymnastics session. The reason why I chose them was that they were the only one on ClassPass. After that first session with them, if I ever go into gymnastics as an adult, they will definitely be my choice.
End Running Boredom
It is always good to try new things. Everything that you do and experience can and will value-add to your running journey.
It did for me and I hope that you will be adventurous enough to experience this for yourself too.